museum of Ancient Art
In 1922, the upper floor of the Hôtel de Lalande, which had been drastically altered to accommodate the police offices, was refurbished by the municipal architect Jacques d’Welles. Five sitting rooms were reconstituted with old woodwork from Bordeaux townhouses (the Hôtels de Ravezies, Gascq and Dudevant). In June 1924, Paul Courteault, curator of the Musée d’Art Ancien, opened the inaugural exhibition of 17th and 18th century art. Comprising a selection of pieces from the museum of arms and antiques, the city archives and library, the painting and sculpture museum, and the museum of the Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux, the collections then grew with the acquisition of nearly 3,000 works, made possible by the generosity of local collectors and a newly created “friends of the museum” group called the Société des Amis du Musée d’Art Ancien.
In 1925, the city government installed an apartment on the ground floor of the Hôtel de Lalande for the local collector Daniel Astruc. Concerned about the effect of this change on the building, Courteault requested that its finest woodwork be given official historical monument status, to confirm the importance of the spaces occupied by the museum. The museum was obliged to close during World War Two, and in 1940 the collections were crated and stored in the cellars of the Musée des Beaux-Arts (Fine Arts Museum).